Over the past week, Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors-Brignac has been called out for a recent $1.4 million home purchase she made in a majority-white neighborhood of Topanga Canyon, Calif.
Critics, media outlets, and even fellow BLM members have questioned how Cullors-Brignac could afford the home purchase and there have been accusations that she was using BLM money for her personal needs.
The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation (BLMGNF) and Cullors-Brignac have both issued statements about the home purchase and BLM finances.
The attack against Cullors-Brignac is a “right-wing offensive,” BLMGNF said in a statement that appeared on Twitter. Read the full statement here:
“Patrisse Cullors is the Executive Director of Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation (BLMGNF). She serves in this role in a volunteer capacity and does not receive a salary or benefits. Patrisse has received a total of $120,000 since the organization’s inception in 2013, for duties such as serving as a spokesperson and engaging in political education work. Patrisse did not receive any compensation after 2019.”
It continued, “To be abundantly clear, as a registered 501c3, BLMGNF cannot and did not commit any organizational resources toward the purchase of personal property by any employee or volunteer. Any insinuation or assertion to the contrary is categorically false.
“Patrisse’s work for Black people over the years has made her and others who align with the fight for Black liberation targets of the racist violence. The narratives being spread at Patrisse have been generated by right-wing forces intent on reducing the support and influence of a movement that is larger than any one organization. This right-wing offensive not only puts Patrisse, her child and her loved ones in harm’s way, it also continues a tradition of terror by white supremacists against Black activists. All Back activists know the fear these malicious and serious actions are meant to install: the fear of being silenced, the trauma of being targeted, the torture of feeling one’s family is exposed to danger just for speaking out against unjust systems. We have seen this tactic of terror time and again but our movement will not be silenced.”
Cullors-Brignac also made a statement, posted on Instagram, in which she said does not receive a salary or benefits from Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation. “I’m also a published author, writer, producer, professor, public speaker, and performance artist,” she wrote. Read her full statement here:
“This movement began as, and will always remain a love letter to Black people. Three words – Black Lives Matter – serve as a reminder to Black people that we are human and deserve to live a vibrant and full life. I worked multiple jobs across many organizations my entire life. I’m also a published author, writer, producer, professor, public speaker, and performance artist.
“I love my work and all of these areas and I work hard to provide for my family. I am accountable to my community in pursuit of an abolitionist world founded in transformative justice. I do not receive a salary or benefits from Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation. Period. This effort to discredit and harass me and my family is not new, nor is it acceptable. It has taken away from where the focus should be– ending white supremacy.
It continued, “You may not like or agree with me. I have definitely made mistakes. I own up to that. I apologize for the mistakes I have made and I work hard at practicing my abolitionist values. But this is deeper than that. I’m talking to these articles being full of lies. It’s also dangerous. This is doxxing, attacking someone online by disseminating private information about them.
“It’s harmful and it’s scary for people and their loved ones, especially someone who receives death threats regularly. To my fellow Black activists, you know what this is. We’ve seen this tactic of terror time and again. I’ll admit, this is a scary time for me. But I will not let this be the moment that silences me. We still have work to do.”
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